Verizon has made a breakthrough in 4G by reaching a speed of 1.45 Gbps in New York commercial environment. The breakthrough in the internet speed is as the result of the cooperation with Qualcomm and Nokia. Bill Stone, the vice president of Technology Planning and Development, said that they will keep on upgrading their LTE network as they make the transition to 5G.
Next week, Verizon will be launching the 5G service in 4 cities. The 5G service promises to offer a speed of at least 1 Gbps. This speed is 10 – 100 times faster than the typical 300 mbps speed. However, Verizon also said that some 4G phones will be able to outperform 5G network by 50% which leads to some consumers asking the question why.
Right now, the chipmaker, Qualcomm is making a a chip called Snapdragon x50 series designed for 5G device. However, it also has been making another chip called 4.9G (x24), close to 5 G, which is designed to provide 4G device with higher performance over 5G device. When 5G debuts, many mobile devices will start to use x50 modems but there will also be some will use X24 modem only.
There are also a few devices like Motorola’s 5G Moto Mod that will include two types of modems including x50 and X24 modems. In case the 5G tower is not available, the user will still be able to connect to the internet through the 4G network. There is no clear designation on the speed range of 4G and 5G, for example, the speed of 4G is in between 5 Mbps – 1 Gbps and the speed of 5G is between 1Gbps – 100 Gbps. Rather, a more accurate statement is that there will be overlapping from the upper level of 4G to the lower level of 5G.
The late improvement on 4G will offer a lot of benefits for consumers. 5G consumers can enjoy faster fall back speed while 4G consumers can access a faster internet speed. Verizon told the press that they were able to achieve the record breaking speed of 1.45 Gbps on 4G LTE because they have a technology that features 6 channel carrier aggregation.
The 6 channel carrier aggregation includes 2 licensed radio frequencies and 4 shared spectrum. Verizon plans on using the same aggregation technology on the 5G network. In addition, Verizon also rely on the two technologies including the 4×4 MIMO and 256 QAM to fill the spectrum with data. The two technologies are already avaialble in more than 1,110 markets in the USA.
According to Qualcomm, Snapdragon X24 can offer up to 2GBps of speed on a LTE network. This means that there is a possibility that it will achieve a breakthrough record in 4G network. Verizon and other carriers are working hard to market its 5G service by advertising its advantages like low latency and improved security. Verizon aims on providing the 5G service in mobile hotspots and residential areas in the selected cities. Customers who order the 5G Home Internet and TV will receive free installation of the Wi-Fi devices. Free router and software upgrades will also be provided.
Called “Virtual Network Solutions” and announced in a press release filled with so much corporate jargon it’s barely understandable, the idea is that spinning up, monitoring, managing, protecting, and tweaking networks is hard for businesses dealing with private and public clouds (unless you’re Goldman Sachs, the CIA, or Verizon itself) so why not let a big ole network do it for you?
The company’s basically providing a bundle of services from companies including Cisco, Fortinet, Juniper, Riverbed and Viptela, and managing those services for companies (and maybe governments) large and small under its own brand.
This is all happening against a backdrop of a huge fight among networks and hosted services providers for businesses’ business and the ongoing move away from proprietary networking gear to commodity hardware.
On one level you’ve got Microsoft, Amazon, and Alphabet pitching public clouds that will, eventually look for their piece of the networking pie over the long term. And other networks (here’s looking at you AT&T) are offering similar services already.
For big telecom companies, and Verizon is nothing if a not a big telecom company, the problem si clear. These companies have invested billions in building out networks that are now taken for granted by consumers. The key play is to build services on top of the network that can generate more cash for the companies that run them.
A great piece in FastCompany illustrates how Verizon’s strategy is playing out on the content side (with a special focus on my direct bosses at Aol). With this new networking play, Verizon is making its bid to dig deeper into business services as well.
Here’s Ainsley O’Connell quoting Verizon chief executive Lowell McAdam:
“The network will always be the foundation, but if you just do that you’re going to be relegated to being a commodity,” he says. “You’ve got to really build on that foundation in order to be relevant going forward.”
These tectonic shifts in the telecom business are mirrored in the ways in which the actual networks are changing.
“The way in which network services are delivered is going through an unprecedented shift—the biggest we’ve seen since the broad adoption of MPLS,” said Shawn Hakl, vice president of networking and innovation, Verizon. “Today the network is transitioning to a virtualized model using similar technology that drove the disruption in the data center market.”
Translation: the same changes that happening with data centers and computing thanks to Amazon, Alphabet, and Microsoft are happening in the network too… and telecoms have to keep pace.